Sid Keswani (pictured), who served as president of Pandora’s North American division starting in 2018, left the charm-maker at the end of April to become the president of Centric Brands, a lifestyle brands collective.
“Sid handed over the market in great shape, and we are grateful for his contributions over the years,” Pandora spokesperson Johan Melchior tells JCK. “Work to find Sid’s successor is ongoing, and we will communicate on this in due time.”
North America is Pandora’s largest market, and the United States accounted for 31% of the brand’s revenue in the first quarter of 2021. The U.S. market delivered a “very strong performance” in the quarter, particularly on Valentine’s Day, the company said recently.
Centric Brands, which just emerged from Chapter 11, sells a wide variety of licensed brands in multiple product categories, including accessories. The company also announced it was appointing former Lord & Taylor president Ruth Hartman to its board of directors. Jason Rabin remains CEO.
Keswani came to Pandora with a wide, varied retail resume, including stints as a senior vice president at Target Corp., and as CEO of Texas grocery chain Fiesta Mart. He arrived at a time when the jewelry-maker had decided to stop buying back its franchise stores, and to work more collaboratively with its partners.
He replaced Scott Burger, who headed Pandora’s North American operations for five years. Burger has since become the chair of rival charm brand Alex and Ani, as well as CEO of Classic Brands, a sleepwear company.
Keswani’s departure comes as—though is likely unrelated to—Pandora has received a good deal of attention in consumer media. Last week, the company announced that it was launching a lab-grown diamond collection, Pandora Brilliance, in the United Kingdom. At the same time, it declared that it would no longer use natural diamonds, an assertion that has stirred quite a bit of press and (mostly intratrade) controversy.
(Photo courtesy of Pandora Jewelry)